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  5. "Ce sont des Françaises."

"Ce sont des Françaises."

Translation:They are French women.

March 14, 2013

21 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/elliotforhan

"They are French people" does not work here?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

The best translation should be "they are French women", in particular because the English make no difference between men and women through pronoun "they".

"they are French" means "ils sont français" or "elles sont françaises".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BorealOwl

I would like to know how one knows when to use the "Ce sont des Françaises" I've been asked to translate here, instead of using "Elles sont françaises". The whole "ils sont/elles sont" versus "ce sont" thing is quite confusing for me at this time...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

In French, "c'est" (sing.) and "ce sont" (plural) are used every time pronoun it, she, he or they is subject of verb "être" and followed by a nominal group, ie: modifier (1) + noun (+ adjective)

o it is + noun => c'est + modifier + noun (+ adjective)

o she is + noun => c'est + modifier + noun (+ adjective)

o he is + noun => c'est c'est + modifier + noun (+ adjective)

o they are + noun => ce sont + modifier + noun (+ adjective)

(1)NOTE: French nouns are always used with "modifiers": articles, definite or indefinite (le/la/les, un/une/des) or possessive adjectives (mon/ma/mes, etc) or demonstrative adjectives (ce/cette/ces) or numeral (deux, trois...).

(2)NOTE: the above rule has no exception with indefinite article un/une/des, but a few exceptions with other modifiers:

  • he is THE chief = IL est LE chef (single statute) + c'est LE chef
  • she is HIS second wife = ELLE est SA seconde épouse (single statute) + c'est SA seconde épouse

THEREFORE:

  • they are French = ils sont français or elles sont françaises (adjectives)

  • they are French men = ce sont des Français (noun)

  • they are French women = ce sont des Françaises (noun)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/killary45

Thank for that. We need a set of exercises on that particular point.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/sylvietr

OMG it all came together for me in your conclusion, Sitesurf! This is a major turning point in my understanding of French usage of modifiers! THANK YOU.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lemmingofdestiny

That's a good point - one suggested "correct" answer is "These are some French men." But that could not actually be the case as it is "françaisES".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AnnaTall

I translated is as 'They are French' as the French sentence could have referred to, say, French girls, French apples? Or am I being silly?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

they are French = ils sont français OR elles sont françaises (nationality as an adjective)

they are Frenchwomen = ce sont des Françaises (women / nationality as a noun)

they are French ones = ce sont des Françaises (things or animals / nationality as a noun) - I'm pretty sure you would only say "they are French" in this case, but the back translation would be wrong (ils/elles sont français/es - adjective).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AnnaTall

tres interessant, merci Sitesurf


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Soolrak

Why "THOSE are French" is wrong? Duo says "these" is correct though...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/sfishlock

These are French is also marked wrong


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

With these/those you don't get the point that they are women (or other feminine subject)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kacenka9

True but then you do not typically point that out in English. "they are french" is normal English sentence, regardless the gender. Sometimes you may want to highlight the fact that you are talking about women and use some word (like 'women') in the sentence. But many times you do not have to as it is not needed or the audience already knows the objects are females. You would never use masculine form though in French, cause it would be simply silly even if the audience already knows you are referring to a group of females. I think "They are French" should be acceptable.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Onoszko

Those are Frenchmen should be accepted, right?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

ce sont des Français [-ɛ]= they are Frenchmen

ce sont des Françaises [-ɛz]= they are Frenchwomen


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/crepe_obsession

The plural form of "ce" is "ces". Why isn't that used here?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

The plural of adjective "ce" is "ces". (this/that and these/those)

But here, "ce" is a pronoun (= this thing), used mainly with verb être: c'est / ce sont; and it remains invariable.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/crepe_obsession

Merci beaucoup! C'est très utile.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Tony979198

That's pretty insidious! Before I called "les anglaises" English women and was rejected and this time I left the "women" out and I am also rejected!!!!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

Can you distinguish a noun from an adjective?

  • Des Françaises (noun) = French women (nominal group)
  • Elles sont françaises (adjective) = They are French (adjective).
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